Taipower to propose voltage switch from 110 to 220 volts for new buildings: report

Taiwan Power Company will make a proposal to the Ministry of Economic Affairs aiming for a law amendment switching to 220-volt electrical wiring networks in future buildings and installation of four-pin 220-volt power outlets

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(By Wikimedia Commons)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News)—Taiwan Power Company (Taipower) will make a proposal to the Ministry of Economic Affairs aiming for a law amendment requiring 220-volt electrical wiring networks in future buildings, as well as the installation of four-pin 220V and three-pin 110V sockets in all households for electrical appliances, according to a Chinese-language Liberty Times report. 

The purpose of the proposed change is to conserve energy, the report said.    

As many countries in the world have adopted 220 volts, Taipower had studied for a “complete voltage change,” in the end giving up on the attempt, due to such a change entailing the replacement of all electrical appliances, and therefore was too drastic, the report said.    

The dilemma finally saw a chance of making a breakthrough when National Taiwan University electrical engineering professor Chen Tsai-hsiang (陳在相) made a “seamless and painless” technical voltage change proposal this year.   

The report quoted Taipower Vice General Manager Wang Yao-ting (王耀庭) as saying that the supply of 220 volts can be achieved out of the existing two-pin and three-pin sockets by adding an additional circuit to make the two live wires going in opposite directions and create the sine wave. He added that by converting the existing two- and three-pin sockets on the wall to three-pin and four-pin ones, respectively, allows both 110-volt and 220-volt electrical appliances to plug in, and the need to replace the existing appliances will be eliminated, the report said.        

According to Taipower’s estimate, the plan is not difficult to implement, the report said. The company is likely to push new buildings in the future to adopt 220-volt electricity, which can reduce distribution system line loss in the home by 75%.

If every household in the country makes the change, one billion kilowatt hours of electricity can be conserved a year, the report said.